Tag Archives: hypocrisy

Fighting Hypocrisy

The solution to financial troubles is very simple. You must increase the money coming in, or you must decrease your expenses. It’s a simple equation but terribly hard to implement. Hypocrisy is similar. Either stop the sin or stop pretending. Again, it is easy to say, but very hard to accomplish.

Stop Pretending


If you’re struggling with hypocrisy, the easiest thing to do is to stop pretending you are something you are not. People do it all the time. The reasoning goes something like this; I’m not good enough to be a Christian, so I’m going to stop. That way, I at least will not be harming the body of Christ. This is not necessarily a bad idea. Hypocrisy hurts the body of Christ. It makes it harder for faithful Christians to show God’s power when there’s a cloud over other brethren. 

The idea that we should cease waving the banner of Christ because we’re not good enough is a mistake. Here’s a little secret: none of us are good enough! The psalmist says no one is righteous and Paul echoes his words (Psalm 14:1-3; 53:1-3; Romans 3:10). John even says that those people who are walking in the light still sin (1 John 1:7). So, the idea that we are sinless in this life is false. Whatever righteousness we have comes only through Christ and is never of our own doing. [bctt tweet=”The idea that we should cease waving the banner of Christ because we’re not good enough is a mistake.” username=”Preachers_Study”]

As we said above, hypocrisy is bad. It must stop. But any withdrawal from the public square must be temporary and must be marked with a desire to return to service.

Stop the Sin


Here’s the hard part. Whatever sin is dragging you down must be eliminated. There simply are no options. Hypocrisy is not just about others; it is about you. Sin in your life is doing more harm to you than it is to the people around you. It’s much like secondhand smoke, the smoker is the one with the greater risk, but those around him are affected too. [bctt tweet=”Hypocrisy is not just about others; it is about you.” username=”Preachers_Study”]

So many people say: I’ll come back to the Lord as soon as I get my life straight. That’s upside down. You will never make your life right by yourself. There is no right life without Christ. There are three essential components for removing sin in your life. [bctt tweet=”You will never make your life right by yourself. There is no right life without Christ.” username=”Preachers_Study”]

  • Get in the word – slow, deliberate, reading of God’s word is essential for spiritual growth. Just as it is important to eat healthy when you are physically sick, it is vital to consume spiritual food when your soul is ill.
  • Kneel in prayer – to commune with God is one of the greatest blessings ever bestowed on anyone. The idea of kneeling in prayer suggests humility before the Creator. Sometimes, the words just won’t come, but silence before God is rich in blessings too.
  • Lean on your brothers and sisters – there’s a reason Jesus gave us the church. There is no way we can defeat Satan alone. Often, God will work on you through other Christians. Don’t resist their offers for help.

It is truly wonderful that you have identified hypocrisy in your life and are trying to purge it. But there is no need for self-sacrifice in your battle with hypocrisy. You can defeat the monster and rise to walk with Christ again.

5 Ways to Guarantee Hypocrisy Will Thrive


“Hypocrite” is a nasty word. It’s a slap in the face to be called a hypocrite. Jesus used it for his loudest critics (Matthew 23). He used it of those who were judgemental while ignoring their own faults (Matthew 7:5; 15:7). It is not a nice label. Nobody likes a hypocrite.

Yet, hypocrisy is everywhere. Why? If it is so bad, why does it keep cropping up?

Hypocrisy remains among us because we feed it, nurture it, and grow it to maturity. Here’s how to guarantee that hypocrisy will grow.

Use Hypocrisy as an Excuse for Hypocrisy

Someone makes a hypocritical statement, and they are called on it. Their response is that their opponent did the same so why complain? It’s common in the news. Memes are floating around the internet quote the leader of one party making a statement in the past that is vehemently opposed today by that same party. Then, the tables are turned, and the hypocrisy flows in the other direction.

In this way of thinking hypocrisy is still just an excuse. It is a weakness of character that allows the horrible practice to spread and expand. Hypocrisy becomes fertilizer for more hypocrisy.

Allow Hypocrisy to be Expected and Accepted

Hypocrisy is so common that we have to come to accept that hypocrisy is a part of everyday life. When was the last time you were shocked, at someone’s hypocritical behavior? Have you ever heard a brother sing sweet hymns to our Lord in the assembly and scream and yell like a banshee when he’s cut off in traffic? How about a sister who modestly sits among the saints Sunday and dresses in attire worthy of a brothel on Monday?

This is the nature of sin. “Everybody is doing it” cries Satan. It must be ok! Can we rediscover a sense of holiness that refuses to accept hypocrisy or any other sin, as normal? Accepting hypocrisy feeds the flock and grows more.

Tolerate Hypocrisy

The government just recalled all romaine lettuce because it was contaminated by bacteria. The contamination was tiny. You couldn’t see it, and it couldn’t even be washed away. This minuscule impurity was enough to sicken and kill people. Its presence in the food chain could not be tolerated.

Tolerate hypocrisy, and it will grow just like a bacterial infestation will grow in your physical body. We seek a consistent but growing holiness among brethren. Gentle, or even strong rebukes, may prevent hypocrisy from becoming habitual. Tolerance of duplicity is the water of a crop of hypocrisy.

Confuse Repentance with Hypocrisy

Our Lord calls for repentance (Luke 13:3). Entrance into the body of Christ requires repentance (Acts 2:38; 3:19). One who has repented talks, thinks, and walks differently than before. On the surface, they may suddenly appear to be a hypocrite, but they are not; they are changed.

When we question the validity of repentance, when we assume hypocrisy instead of struggle, we will drive that person back into the arms of sin and make our prophecy of their hypocrisy self-fulfilling.

We must encourage repentance for no man can come unto Jesus without being changed. But understand that change is often slow. It is hard. Sometimes we slip. That is not hypocrisy. To confuse repentance and pretense is sure to grow a bumper crop of hypocrisy.

Spout Vague Teachings to Mask Hypocrisy

At its core, hypocrisy is about hiding conduct in a way that masks hypocrisy. No one wants to be labeled a hypocrite, so he is careful with his words and speaks in broad generalities avoiding specifics.

Our pulpits have become fountains of weak words and weasel statements. As a result, brethren have begun to use the same language. Our claim that sin is a problem or a disease masks the reality of its true, heinous nature. Jesus was never vague. He spoke truth. Speak elusive words and hypocrisy will soon bloom.

Root out hypocrisy and a beautiful lawn will grow in place of the weeds.



The Preacher Unmasked: Preachers are Hypocrites

face and hands of mime with dark make-upPreachers are hypocrites. There, I said it. If a hypocrite is someone who says one thing but does something else then preachers are hypocrites and this author is foremost. Because our work is so public when we stumble everybody has something to say. The first word out of the mouth of some is a charge of “HYPOCRITE!”

Most preachers I know are scared to death of being labeled a hypocrite. It is a powerful word that conveys strong images and even stronger emotions. It is not a charge that I want leveled at me nor am I willing to throw it around lightly. But let’s think a little more about what a hypocrite really is and maybe we can come to a better understanding. Maybe preachers ARE NOT really hypocrites.

Hypocrisy is…

What exactly is a hypocrite? What does it mean? The dictionary definitions are all similar.

  • A person who pretends to have virtues he really does not possess;
  • One who feigns some desirable or publicly approved attitude, especially one whose private life, opinions or statements belie his or her public statements;
  • a person who pretends to be what he is not.

You get the idea. Inherent in these definitions is the idea of deliberate deception. Failing because of weakness despite our best efforts is not hypocrisy. It is, well, failing. And all of us fail, preachers and non-preachers alike. In other words, when a person sets out to deceive by speaking one thing while doing another he is a hypocrite.

Hypocrisy hurts…

Hypocrisy can be especially damaging when revealed. Hidden secret sin that suddenly becomes public hurts the sinner but also the people around him. The more respected the sinner, the greater the damage. So, when a man, like a preacher,  in the public, eye sins, it has the potential to cause devastation to those around him. But that brings a question.

Do we expect to much of our preachers?

The Lord expects much out of those who preach and teach. “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness” (James 3:1). Jesus was tough on teacher who did not apply the truth of Scripture to their lives. In John 3:10 he rebuked Nicodemus, who as a teacher of Israel, did not understand the things Jesus was teaching. Some of the strongest language Jesus used toward sinners came in his rebuke of the scribes and Pharisees in Matthew 23. In each case he called them “hypocrites!”

It may be that we have elevated our preachers much too high. It’s a cliche but preachers really do put their pants on one leg at a time just like everyone else. The same things that tempt you will also tempt them. So it should not be surprising when preachers fail, just like every one else.

But a brother might argue, “If a preacher can’t live the Christian life then how can I?” Good question. The problem comes when we think any of us is perfect. We are not.

 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:7-10).

I like this verse for many reasons. But notice when Jesus bloods cleanses us. It cleanses our sin when we are walking in the light. The time when we “walk in the light” is the time we are in fellowship with Jesus. But it is also the time sins come into  our lives and are taken away by Jesus. We actually sin while in fellowship with Jesus. That is the only conclusion we can draw from the text. Now the sin is not deliberate and we are not persisting in sin but we still stumble and so do preachers.

The hypocrite charge is best left for those who knowingly and willfully say one thing and the practice something else. To be sure, some preachers are hypocrites. They serve their own belly rather than the Lord (Philippians 3:19) and scratch the ears of those with an itch (2 Timothy 4:3). But be gentle with you preacher. If he hasn’t already stumbled, he will. But that doesn’t necessarily make him a hypocrite. Remember, Judge righteously (Matthew 7:1-5) and extend your preacher the same grace you desire.

If you haven’t read my disclaimer yet, please read it here.

Bryant Evans may be reached at bryant at bryantevans.com. You can follow Bryant on Twitter @jbevans.